Don’t choose between your head and heart this World Heart Day

CAPTURING THE HEARTFELT COLLABORATION: Margherita Cummins and Lucia Ebbs - CEO from CRY Ireland, alongside Séamus Sheedy - Chair of IACP, and Lisa Molloy - CEO of IACP, unite for World Heart Day to shine a spotlight on the vital intersection of mental well-being and cardiac health. For more information visit and (Picture: Sasko Lazarov Photocall Ireland)

This World Heart Day 2023, September 29th, two Irish registered charities – Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) Ireland and the Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (IACP) – have teamed up to encourage families of young people living with an inherited cardiac condition and families who have suffered, or are at risk of, a sudden cardiac death (SCD) to avail of mental health support services including counselling. 

CRY Ireland supports these individuals and families across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland through counselling and family support programmes, as well as providing a freephone helpline service.

The aftermath of losing a young person to sudden cardiac death, or a young person receiving a diagnosis of an inherited cardiac condition can be a challenging time. The young person and their families may feel stressed, anxious or in some instances even depressed. Up to 80 lives of people under 35 years of age are lost as a result of sudden cardiac death in Ireland each year.

The added challenge of the psychological impact of a cardiac condition along with managing the physical demand can greatly decrease a person’s overall quality of life. Through its Family Support Programme, CRY Ireland offers up to six free counselling sessions with an IACP accredited therapist for affected young people and their families.

Lucia Ebbs, CEO of CRY Ireland, says: “It is important that families that have suffered, or are at risk of, a sudden cardiac death (SCD) of a young person, and young people who have been diagnosed with an inherited cardiac condition, take the necessary steps to take care of their mental well-being.

“We know from working with individuals and families that following a diagnosis, this can be a very difficult time and subsequently a person’s mental state may suffer as a result. Collaborating with IACP supports our families by combining their expertise in providing professional counselling and psychotherapy services. Together, we aim to deliver comprehensive care that addresses both the physical and emotional aspects of heart health.” 

Lisa Molloy, CEO of the IACP, commented: “Joining hands with CRY Ireland on World Heart Day highlights our shared commitment to recognising the profound emotional impact of cardiac conditions on individuals and their loved ones.”

Seámus Sheedy, Chair of the IACP also commented: “At the IACP, we are dedicated to providing professional counselling and psychotherapy services to help individuals cope with the emotional toll of health challenges. Together, we strive to provide the support and understanding necessary to navigate these challenges with resilience and hope.” 

Families affected by sudden cardiac death or those living with a diagnosis of an inherited cardiac condition wishing to apply for up to six free counselling sessions with an IACP accredited therapist can do so by emailing 

For more information on CRY Ireland please visit:

To see more about the IACP, please visit: